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Letters Bad medicine: medicated minors

Is psychiatry thinking adequately about behaviour?

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 19 August 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c4445
  1. Iain McClure, consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist1
  1. 1Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh EH9 1LF
  1. imcclure{at}

    Spence’s cogent summary of concerns about child behaviour problems contains a fundamental confusion about behaviour and thinking disorders.1 To a psychiatrist, mental disorder is a conscious difference in thinking, pathological compared with the norm. Thought difference leads to behaviour problems that can threaten the patient’s or others’ safety.

    Over the past century psychiatry explored such presentations in children, and their …

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